Train 3,000 farmers in sustainable farming and help 400 rural people find a job.
In the province of Chimaltenango in the southwest of Guatemala many farmers produce beans and peas. We want to train 3,000 farmers to use sustainable farming practices. The goal is to develop a ‘technology package’ in which topics like seed selection, crop protection, intercropping, irrigation and soil improvement are covered. That will enable these farmers to maintain or increase their income and will put them in a good position to deliver their produce to the buyers. Twelve existing rural pre-processing companies will be trained in entrepreneurship and implement CSR policies. These processing companies will generate about 400 new jobs in the coming harvest seasons, of which at least 300 for women.
Proper working conditions and fair prices are essential for promoting sustainable farming from the other side of the value chain. We are currently raising awareness for this at AGEXPORT, the Guatemalan export association, which is interested in accepting an overall CSR policy for the vegetable export. We are also working together with Grupo CEIS, one of the export companies who will act as an important ambassador in this project.
This project can only succeed if a market is created for these products. Therefore food chains and retailers in the US and Europe need to see the advantages of buying sustainably produced vegetables. And consumers must also be willing to pay a fair price for these products. So will you set an example and buy fair vegetables from Guatemala?